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Doraemon

From Academic Kids

Missing image
Doraemon_the_legend_of_Sun_King.jpg
Nobita and the Legend of the Sun King Poster

Doraemon [1] (http://www.k.hosei.ac.jp/~h01d8188/wall0201s.gif) (ドラえもん) by Hiroshi Fujimoto, a.k.a. Fujiko F. Fujio (藤子・F・不二雄) is a Japanese manga about a robotic cat from the future who has travelled back in time to aid the thoroughly hapless Nobita Nobi [2] (http://www.dora-world.com/information/wallpaper/wp_augs.jpg) in order that his descendants reap the benefits of Nobita's success one day rather than be burdened by the considerable financial debts which his incompetence has led them to suffer in the original timeline.

There are 1,344 stories in all. They are collected in the Takaoka Central Library (http://www3.city-takaoka.jp/), Toyama, Japan, where Mr. Fujimoto was born.

Doraemon was awarded the grand prize of the Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize [3] (http://www.asahi.com/tezuka/index.html) (手塚治虫文化賞) of 1997.

Contents

Setting and Main Characters

The stories are seemingly formulaic. Doraemon possesses a fourth-dimensional pocket from which he produces all manners of futuristic tools, gadgets and playthings. Nobita Nobi (野比のび太; Nobi Nobita), a poor athlete, poorer scholar, weak-willed, lazy and beset by the local bullies inevitably comes crying to Doraemon for some device to gain revenge/fix his problems/or show up the local rich boy who parades his wealthy acquisitions to arouse Nobita's jealousy. Nobita usually goes too far and, despite Doraemon's best intentions and the technology of the 22nd century, gets into deeper hot water than before.

Other main characters are:

  • Shizuka Minamoto [4] (http://coffee.jblog.org/images/shizuka3.jpg) (源静香; Minamoto Shizuka) - a young girl who is the object of Nobita's affections
  • Takeshi Goda [5] (http://dora-world.com/information/wallpaper/wp_junl.jpg) (nickname: Gian, Jaian in romaji, ジャイアン; 剛田武, Goda Takeshi) - a bully whose name is based on the Japanese words for 'Jaiko's older brother' unlike the word giant as it is popularly assumed,he is quick-tempered and possessed of a truly horrendous singing voice. He has a younger sister, Jaiko [6] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/dora08.jpg) (ジャイ子), who aims to be a mangaka.
  • Suneo Honekawa [7] (http://yabet.fc2web.com/uttorisuneo.jpg) (骨川スネ夫; Honekawa Suneo) - the braggart who parades his material wealth in front of Nobita. He has a younger brother, Sunetsugu [8] (http://kyu_doraemon.at.infoseek.co.jp/sunetugu.jpg) (スネツグ), who was adopted into a family in New York, USA.

Himitsu Dogu

Doraemon's various devices (Himitsu Dogu; literally, secret devices; 秘密道具; see chindogu) mix the mundane everyday items of Japan with a fanciful twist. For instance the main mode of transportation for the various characters is the take-koputaa (literally, bamboo-copter; タケコプター) which combines the words take and koputaa – a child's propeller toy with helicopter. The device itself appears to be a simple propeller which the characters place on their heads to gain the ability to fly. Another device the moshimo box (もしもボックス) is a pun based upon the phrase "moshi moshi", the greeting used on the telephone, and moshimo, meaning 'what if'? The device is a phone booth into which the characters dial and propose a "what if" scenario which magically alters the world. Nobita has at various times wished for a world where money was not necessary (and storekeepers forced cash onto his hands upon attempting to purchase toys), a world without mirrors (where nobody had ever seen a reflective surface) and for a world where lazy people who napped would be hailed as celebrities.

History

Since its debut in 1970, Doraemon stories had been selectively collected into 45 books (19741996), which had a circulation of over 80,000,000 as of 1992. In addition, Doraemon have appeared in a variety of manga series of Shogakukan [9] (http://www.shogakukan.co.jp/dora/) (小学館). Shogakukan will publish disappeared manga of Doraemon in the above 45 comic books as Doraemon Plus (forthcoming). After a brief and unpopular attempt at animation Doraemon (in 1973 by Nippon Television Network (http://www.ntv.co.jp/)) remained fairly exclusively the domain of the printed page until 1979 when the TV Asahi [10] (http://www.tv-asahi.co.jp/doraemon/) (テレビ朝日) produced a series of Doraemon anime (1979 -). This series became incredibly popular and Doraemon fever swept across Japan.

In 1980, the first of a series of annual feature length animated films was made. The films have taken a slightly more adventure oriented tone taking the familiar characters of Doraemon and placing them in a variety of exotic and perilous settings. Nobita and his friends have visited the age of the dinosaurs, the far reaches of the galaxy, the heart of darkest Africa (where they encountered a race of sentient bipedal dogs), the deepest depths of the ocean, and a world of magic. Some of the films are based on legends (e.g. Atlantis) and literature works (Journey to the West and Arabian Nights). Some films also have serious themes, especially on environmental topics and the use of technology.

In July 2004, the Fujiko Movie Studio (藤子プロ) announced that the Doraemon film of 2005 was postponed until the spring of 2006 [11] (http://www.dora-world.com/news/dearfans_f.html). On 15th February, 2005, ドラえもんチャンネル (http://www.dora-world.com/news/movie2006/index.html) released an information about the film of 2006.

Since 15th April, 2005, a new version of Doraemon has been telecast on TV Asahi with the new seiyus and staff.

Feature-length Doraemon Films

Doraemon and Friends.

There is an official website [12] (http://www.dora-movie.com/) in Japanese.

Fujiko F. Fujio

Fujiko F. Fujio and Fujiko Movie Studio

Fujiko Movie Studio

NOTE: The asterisk (*) shows the original story was written by Fujiko F. Fujio.

Other Doraemon Films

NOTE: The asterisk (*) shows the original story was written by Fujiko F. Fujio.

Dorami-chan Films

Dorami-chan (ドラミちゃん) is a younger sister of Doraemon. She lives in the 22nd-century Tokyo (トーキョー) with Sewashi (セワシ), a Nobita’s great-great-grandson. She likes melon buns. She fears cockroaches. She seems to be superior to Doraemon. She sometimes visits Nobita’s by a time machine.

See Dorami-chan (left side), Sewashi (right side) (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/mission/mission37.jpg).

The Doraemons Films

The Doraemons (ザ☆ドラえもんズ) is a kind of an old boys' association of the Robot School (ロボット学校) where Doraemon attended. The members are:

  • Doraemon (ドラえもん)
  • Dora-the-Kid [13] (http://fukurokudo.k-server.org/kiriban-illust2/kiriban5757.jpg) (ドラ・ザ・キッド) – He is good at quick shooting, but he has a fear of heights (acrophobia). He works for an assistant of a sheriff in the 19th-century USA.
  • Wang Dora [14] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/doraz04.jpg) (王ドラ) – He is the smartest among the Doraemons and is a master of kung fu. He studies medicine in the Qing Dynasty, China while he works for an assistant of a doctor of Chinese medicine. He has a girlfriend, Mimiko (ミミコ), who is a nurse.
  • Dora-med III [15] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/doraz05.jpg) (ドラメッドⅢ世) – He wears Arabian clothes and forecasts from the tarot. He lives in the Middle East (just because he fears water, a rumour says). His dream is to open the Water Land for children who live in desert regions. When he gets angry, he becomes a giant.
  • Dora-nichov [16] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/doraz07.jpg) (ドラニコフ) – He is taciturn and is extremely sensitive to the cold. He transforms himself into a wolf if he looks something round. He blows fire by taking something hot like Tabasco. It is unknown where he lives, maybe in Russia, or in Hollywood, USA.
  • El Matadora [17] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/doraz03.jpg) (エル・マタドーラ) – He is very strong. He likes napping (siesta). He lives in the 17th-century Spain. He disguises himself by working for a dishwasher in a butcher's in the day, but his real job is to save the poor. People call him 'Kaiketsu-Dora' (快傑ドラ). His dream is a matador.
  • Dora-rio [18] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/doraz06.jpg) (ドラリーニョ) – He is very quick, but forgetful. He lives in Brazil. He spends days in playing Association Football (soccer) with a Brazilian boy, Nobio (ノビーニョ), and the Mini-Doras (ミニドラ軍団).

Source: Doraemon Characters (http://home3.highway.ne.jp/ryoma/dorachar.htm) (Japanese)

They are tightly united by a card called Shin'yu Tereka [19] (http://www.ctb.ne.jp/~azx/dora/dorae/dorae08.jpg) (literally, close friend telephone card; 親友テレカ). They can call each other with the card everywhere and every time.

The Doraemons are collected into:

  • Tanaka (19952001), 6 vols.
  • Miyazaki & Mitani (1997 – 2001), special ed., 12 vols.
  • Mitani (19992002), the Robot Training School days ed., 3 vols.

all published by Shogakukan.

Dorami-chan and Doraemons Films

Seiyu

The main seiyus (声優) in Doraemon are:

Since 1979 they have acted the main characters’ voice of Doraemon. However, the major Japanese newspapers on 22nd November, 2004 reported that they would give up their parts to other people in the spring of 2005 due in part to the 25th anniversary of the Doraemon TV-series and their age.

See Mainichi Daily News (http://mdn.mainichi.co.jp/news/20041122p2a00m0dm005001c.html) and Kyodo (http://asia.news.yahoo.com/041121/kyodo/d86gi7pg0.html).

On 13th March, 2005, the TV Asahi [20] (http://www.tv-asahi.co.jp/doraemon_25/contents/fan/) announced seiyus for the 5 main characters.

Analysis/significance

  • In 2005, the Japan Society of New York selected Doraemon as a culturally significant work of Japanese otaku pop-culture in its exhibit Little Boy: The Arts of Japan’s Exploding Subculture, curated by renowned artist Takashi Murakami. In Murakami's analysis, he states that Doraemon's formulaic plotlines typified the "wish fulfilment" mentality of 1970s Japan, where the electronics revolution glamorized the idea that one could solve their problems with machines and gadgets rather than hard work or individual intelligence.

Doraemon in the World

Nowadays, Doraemon is widely popular beyond Japan where Doraemon was born. The publishing dates below are slightly misleading, particularly in the Southeast Asian market. Doraemon has been published widely and without license in many countries until its actual publishing rights were obtained due to stricter regulations.

Source: 小学館:藤子・F・不二雄ワンダーランド ぼくドラえもん (http://www.shogakukan.co.jp/bokudora/), vol. 9

Asia

Country Names First Published in First Broadcast in LanguagesLocal Names
China 1992 1991 Mandarin Chinese 哆啦A梦 (many Chinese mainlanders still prefer using 小叮当.)
Hong Kong 1992 (officially published), first introduced by a children magazine 兒童樂園 (children paradise) in the 1970s 1982 Yue Chinese 多啦A夢 (most Hong Kong people still prefer using 叮噹<Ding Dong>)
Indonesia 19911991 IndonesianDoraemon
Korea19942001 Korean 도라에몽
Malaysia19931992 Malay, Chinese (publications) Tora Aman: Doraemon (Malay), 小叮当 (Chinese)
Philippines2000 Tagalog
Singapore19971992Chinese (publications), English (broadcasts)哆啦A梦
Taiwan1970s (unlicensed) 1993 (licensed)1996Mandarin Chinese哆啦A夢 (most Taiwanese still prefer using 小叮噹)
Thailand 19941982 Thai โดราเอมอน, โดเรมอน
Vietnam 1992 (unlicensed) 1998 (licensed)2000 Vietnamese Đ-r-mon

Europe

Country Names First Published in First Broadcast in
Cyprus 1994
France 2003 by Fox Kids (http://www.foxkids.fr/)
Portugal
Italy20051982
Russia1990 with Japan Foundation (http://www.jpf.go.jp/j/)
Spain19941993
  • In Italy, there is a unique theme song, il gatto DORAEMON (http://digilander.libero.it/DarkSeed/sigle/testi/gatdora1.htm), sung by Oliver Onions.
  • In Spain, Doraemon is translated into five languages including Catalan-Valencian-Balear in addition to Spanish. The first Doraemon film was televised in 2000.

Middle East

Doraemon was broadcast from 1995 for some years.

Doraemon in Arabic: عبقور


North America

South America

Doraemon has been broadcast for the present.

Doraemon was broadcast for some years from 1982.

Series finale rumors

There are two current and often quoted urban legends that started spreading in late 1990s of an ending to the Doraemon series.

The first and the more optimistic ending was made public by Nobuo Sato several years ago. Nobita was given a choice between replacing the battery inside a frozen Doraemon, which would cause it to lose all memory, or await a competent robotics technician who would be able to resurrect the cat-robot one day. Nobita swore that very day to work hard in school, graduate with honours, and become that robotics technician. He successfully resurrected Doraemon in the future as a robotics professor, became successful as an AI developer, and thus lived happily ever after, thus relieving his progeny of the financial burdens that caused Doraemon to be sent to his space-time in the first place.

The second, more pessimistic ending suggests that Nobita Nobi is suffering from autism and that all the characters (including Doraemon) are simply fictional characters in his imagination. The idea that Nobita was a sick and dying little boy who imagined the entire series on his sickbed to help him ease his pain and depression no doubt angered quite a bit of fans.

However, the plausibility of the issues was discussed here and it concludes that there is no ending to Doraemon. See [21] (http://www.remus.dti.ne.jp/~chankuma/DoraData/Q&A/Q&A1.html#QA005) (Japanese).

However, there are actually three official endings to Doraemon that were made. Doraemon was discontinued in two media because readers were advancing in grades and an ending was believed to be needed. These two are not reprinted.

  • In March 1971 issue of the magazine Shogaku 4-nensei [22] (http://www.netkun.com/sho4/) (literally, elementary school's fourth grader; 小学四年生) Doraemon claimed that visitors from futures were causing too much trouble and that a trip to the past was being discontinued. Doraemon leaves Nobita.
  • In March 1972 issue of the magazine Shogaku 4-nensei Doraemon for some reason had to go back but fakes a mechanical problem so that Nobita would let him go. Nobita believes him and promises to wait until Doraemon gets well. Realizing that Nobita can handle departure, Doraemon tells the truth and Nobita accepts. Doraemon returns to the future.

The third ending was actually meant to be the official ending as the TV rating did not fare well and the Fujiko Fujio duo was busy with other works. But Doraemon did not leave their minds and restarted from next month's issue. In 1981, this episode was made into anime, and in 1998, this was released as an anime movie.

  • In the March 1973 issue of the magazine Shogaku 4-nensei, Nobita again returns home after losing a fight against Gian. Doraemon then explains that he has to return. Nobita tries to have Doraemon stay but after talking it over with his parents accepts Doraemon's departure. They take a last walk in the park. After they split up, Nobita encounters Gian and gets into a fight again. After a long duel with Nobita trying to win at all costs so that Doraemon can leave without worries, Gian lets Nobita win for not giving up. Doraemon finds Nobita passed out and takes him home. Sitting beside sleeping Nobita and after a moment of thought, Doraemon returns to the future.

When the Fujiko Fujio duo broke up in the 1987, the very idea of an official ending to the series was never discussed. Since Fujiko F. died in 1996 before any decisions were reached, any "endings" of Doraemon are fan fiction.

External links


Doraemon is published in two bilingual editions.

The first version is bilingual in English and Japanese (Shogakukan English comics; 2002- ).

  • Title: Doraemon: Gadget Cat from the Future
  • Publisher: Shogakukan (http://www.shogakukan.co.jp/dora_comics/)

The second version is bilingual in English and Yue Chinese.

  • Title: 多啦A夢學英文 (Duōlā-A-mng xu yīngwn, in pinyin; Doraemon: Study English)
  • Publisher: 香港青文出版社 (http://www.hkcomics.com/tm260603tleng01-g.html) (HKcomics)
  • Vol. 1 (http://store.yahoo.com/icomicshop-hk/tm260603tleng01.html)
  • Vol. 2 (http://store.yahoo.com/icomicshop-hk/tm260603tleng02.html)
  • Vol. 3 (http://store.yahoo.com/icomicshop-hk/tm260603tleng03.html)
  • Vol. 4 (http://store.yahoo.com/icomicshop-hk/tm260603tleng04.html)
  • Vol. 5 (http://store.yahoo.com/icomicshop-hk/tm260603tleng05.html)
  • Vol. 6 (http://store.yahoo.com/icomicshop-hk/tm260603tleng06.html)ar:عبقور

de:Doraemon eo:Doraemon es:Doraemon fr:Doraemon id:Doraemon it:Doraemon ja:ドラえもん ko:도라에몽 ms:Tora Aman nl:Doraemon sv:Doraemon th:โดราเอมอน vi:Đôrêmon zh:哆啦A梦 zh-min-nan:Ke-kh-niau Si-tin-tang

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